33.9 percent of the Americans are obese
None of the U.S. states managed to reach the national goal of lowering the obesity rate to 15 percent, in fact the only one reporting a lowering was Colorado, who reached 18.6 percent. Tennessee, Alabama, and Mississippi reported an increased prevalence of obesity above 30 percent in 2007, and now Kentucky, West Virginia, Arkansas, Oklahoma and Louisiana joined the list. The highest percent was that of the Mississippi that reported 34.4 percent obese from the total population. The data was reported by Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) that evaluates the percentage by self reported health data via telephone interviews and Dr. William Dietz, director of nutrition, physical activity, and obesity for the CDC says that it may be underestimated because it has been proved that women underestimate their weight when asked. The national obesity estimated by this study lies somewhere around 26.7 percent, while reports from National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey say that there is a 33.9 percent obese population. The BRFSS data shows that there is only a 1.1 percent increase in the obesity report compared to 2007, but this means that 2.4 million people more are suffering from obesity.
Obesity disproportionately affects racial groups: 36.8 percent of the non Hispanic blacks are blacks, 30.7 percent of the Hispanics, 32.9 percent of the people that never finished high school, 31.1 percent of people aged between 50 and 59 and 30.9 percent of people aged between 60 and 69. Dr. William Dietz believes that Colorado has such a low obesity rate because it is situated one mile above sea level and people who live at such high altitudes spend more energy even for normal daily activities than others. And above this, Colorado has invested in physical activity initiatives such as parks and trails.11